OK, show of hands for those of us who have ever thought to themselves "Remember: stop for milk" and have driven right past the store a few minutes later. Simple example to a real challenge for most of us.
The reality is that our brains work best when they're working on a problem - when they're actively DOING something. They don't function so well as mass-storage devices - especially for short-term items. Sure, you can remember what your 3rd grade teacher's name was, but can you remember what you had to eat 3 nights ago? Or even more relevant - to take out that roast to thaw for dinner tonight?
And so we arrive at out title for today's blog article. Really quite a simple concept and many people do make lists. Some many lots of lists (some maybe too many!). The key though to remembering things is to get it out of your head as soon as you remember it and know it will get into your trusted system (more on trusted systems in the near future). Once you establish the habit, you mind will trust that it will be taken care of and won't pop-up at the wrong time with the reminder that isn't relevant for the moment.
Case in point - I was doing yard work a few weeks ago. Had to cut the grass, change the oil in the motorcycle, clean out the gutters and a few other things. What I didn't do at first was start by writing down what I wanted to do and more than once found myself stopping to try and remember what it was I wanted to do next. Finally I got hold of myself and wrote down what I wanted to do. THEN I had a check list for the things I wanted to do that day and didn't get side-tracked by other things that came up. What did I do with those side-trackable things? I put them on a different list for another day. Got it down and they'll get done! ;-)